Tag Archives: 24 Views of Squak Mountain

24 Views of Squak Mountain: Third Week of February

The time of the warring seasons is here.

Spring battles Winter in a long, drawn out fight.

The conclusion is inevitable. We know who the winner will be.

Perhaps that’s what makes the Winter seem harsher now: the desperation in its fight.

Spring days and Winter nights.

Clear, glorious sun giving warmth.

Drenching, dreary rain chilling to the bone.

Hardest of all is the sense of dislocation in this all. Am I in Winter or am I in Spring? Should my body be hibernating and hunkering down, or going out and expansively exploring?

Do I feel the joy of new life? Or mourn the death and destruction I still see?

It is a time that forces onto us a hard practice: to be present with the unresolvable conflict. To feel joy and sorrow at once, equally. To switch from Winter to Spring and back again with as much ease as we can muster.

I walk with my dog in the woods under the bright sun and hear the chirping of newly born birds.

I walk with my dog in the woods in the drenching rain and see the fallen trees and washed out trails.

Life within Death within Life within Death.

The season of infinity: the snake that eats its tail.

24 Views of Squak Mountain: Mid-January

The Long Dark.

That’s what I call this time now.

The Winter Holidays have ended and Spring feels far away. Daylight is increasing….but that feels theoretical: you won’t notice it until Spring.

It’s just dark.

And cold.

When the sun is out, we lose the insulation of the clouds and so it’s even colder.

When the clouds are here, it’s warmer but dark to the point of dusk all day.

Take your pick: you’ll get one or the other or sometimes both.

Most of all, everything is static, frozen in time and place (sometimes literally).

The death of the Fall and the destruction of early Winter are done. And the damage and aftermath lie all around us.

The mountain beauty is cold, severe, harsh. Reminding us that people really do die in the wilderness out here.

The harder the winter, the greater the promise of Spring. But that’s a long ways away.

For now, all we can do is keep moving, even against the cold, static background of Winter.

Because to stop is to die and to die and die a slow, cold, wasting death.

Sometimes the greatest thing we can do is just get up and move that day.

24 Views of Squak Mountain: Mid-October

Sometimes the seasons change like a switch is flipped.

Since July it has been dry.

A long summer dryness that, like a visiting parent, stayed far too long.

Yesterday, Nature flipped the switch, making the rains come, at last.

And so now it is fall, truly.

The high, light blue sky is hung now with low, light grey.

The spiders are washed away and are sleeping now until spring.

The leaves are starting to fall, bringing a beautiful and graceful ending to their days.

Night asserts her increasing dominance over day. Soon we will be into the vampire season.

For now though, the echoes of coming Samhain ring in the forest. The time of remembering and seeing those lost is nearly upon us now.

The mist that obscures the line between the worlds is coming, covering the forest like a blanket.

October. The Orange Month.

24 Views of Squak Mountain: Early September

The cloudless sky is a deep blue.

The sunlight more golden than yellow.

A gentle breeze blows against the Balinese chimes, tolling single notes, one after the other.

Two ravens fly high above the canopy of trees, so fast and strong their wingbeats sound like a breeze.

A bee flies by loudly buzzing.

Birds chirp away in the deep of the forest.

The sound of a lone truck off on the distant roadway reminds of the outside world of people, but doesn’t intrude.

The last days of summer, the early days of fall. Mixed and mingled in the warmth of the afternoon and the cool of the night.

All is on the cusp: endings and beginnings blending and mixing. Loss and opportunities. Grief and hope.

24 Views of Squak Mountain: Late August

The sunrise comes later.

The sunset comes sooner.

The sun becomes golden, less yellow.

The morning air begins to show the first edge of cold.

Amongst the overgrown green and dried brown, the occasional hint of yellow-green and brown-red.

Spiders everywhere. Orbital webs strewn all over to stock up for the winter.

The summer is ending. The fall is coming. And while the seasons move to endings, life moves to beginnings with new grades, new shows, new everything.

So strange: our society inhales while nature exhales. We start anew while the land begins its annual dying.